Next Honda Accord will offer CVT as only automatic transmission with 4-banger
DETROIT -- The redesigned 2013 Honda Accord will have a continuously variable transmission as its only automatic transmission offered when combined with a four-cylinder engine.
The introduction of CVTs in the Accord will be the first in many Hondas with this transmission type, executives said.
Honda Motor CEO Takanobu Ito said that Honda has "a lot of expectations" for the CVT technology, "But we have to carefully examine which models can be most effective to get this technology."
The Accord four-cylinder also will be offered with a five-speed manual transmission, but the manual gearbox typically accounts for a small percentage of total sales, said Tetsuo Iwamura, CEO of American Honda. The V-6 Accord will have a choice of six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions.
For customers, "there will be some institutional learning, but I think we'll do fine with it," said John Mendel, American Honda executive vice president.
Mendel said other traditional-transport vehicles will be candidates for getting CVTs, but added that any vehicle with performance or off-road characteristics would stay with traditional geared transmissions.
Honda let journalists drive the CVT at its Motegi test track in November. Whereas most CVTs have an off-putting feeling -- like a slipping clutch under acceleration as the transmission struggles to find the proper ratio -- the Honda CVT felt much more precise.
A driving impression felt as though, rather than a continuously variable transmission with cones and belts, the Honda CVT might be more accurately described as infinitely geared.
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